Smoltz May Start Throwing

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Saturday May 10, 2008

PITTSBURGH (AP) -- John Smoltz hopes to persuade the Atlanta
Braves' medical staff to allow him to resume throwing as early as

Smoltz has been sidelined for two weeks because of biceps and
rotator cuff problems in his right arm. A starter when the season
began, Smoltz will go into the bullpen once he returns. He anticipates having some pain when he starts throwing, but is optimistic it will be minimal and the discomfort will go away sometime this season.

Smoltz said today, "I don't want to keep losing so much ground.
Tomorrow (Sunday) will be two weeks without picking up a ball. I
hope that it's not much longer, so I can start getting into a

He said such a long layoff is difficult because he must make
sure his arm strength is where it needs to be once he comes back. Smoltz, long one of the NL's top starters, was the Braves'
closer from 2001-04 before returning to the rotation in 2005. He
was 3-2 with a 2.00 ERA in five starts this season before learning
April 29th he had an inflamed right biceps tendon and rotator cuff.

Smoltz, who turns 41 on Thursday, has a 210-147 career record, a
3.25 ERA and 154 saves, but is resigned to being in the bullpen the
rest of the season.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)